Suspicious Material at Bakersfield Airport Turns Out to Be Honey

Bomb squad called in after discovery inside luggage

By Gil Cunha and Olsen Ebright
|  Tuesday, Jan 5, 2010  |  Updated 5:16 PM PDT
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Honey, I Shut Down the Bakersfield Airport

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What was originally thought to be explosives at the Bakersfield airport turned out to be five soft drink bottles full of honey, said authorities Tuesday.

The scare prompted federal officials to stop all flights in and out of the airport. America's anxiety over air travel has been in full force since Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab tried to destroy an airplane on a flight from Amsterdam to Detroit.

The suspicious material was discovered in a checked bag at Meadows Field shortly before 7:30 a.m. The bag's owner, 31-year-old Francisco Ramirez, was detained for questioning.

Ramirez, a gardener from Milwaukee, told authorities he flew to Bakersfield to spend Christmas with his sister, KCRA reported:

[Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood] said investigators are trying to determine whether there was something in the honey or on the bag that caused security alarms to go off.

Two TSA officers who reported feeling ill were taken to a hospital for evaluation then released with no medical issues, said Transportation Security Administration spokeswoman Suzanne Trevino.

At least one SkyWest Airlines flight from San Francisco was diverted to Los Angeles.

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